David Sorin: David Sorin, called Davie by his seven siblings, and Uncle Davie by his nieces and nephew, was the oldest child of Rebecca and Max Sorin. He was born in 1912 in Shenandoah. David was a night watchman at the United Wiping Cloth
Company and the R. Sorin Scrap Yard where he worked for the family businesses. When he was young, he would visit his grandparents in Hazleton where his grandfather, Chazzan Karll, taught him Hebrew and synagogue davening. He would often diligently study a Haftorah portion and chant it at the Kehillat Israel Synagogue in Shenandoah. David prided himself in his extensive collection of famous Chazzans’ records. He immersed himself in Jewish music and ideas. David also served as a “shomer”, a Jewish person who is entrusted with watching over a deceased person at a funeral home from death until the body is buried. He was very serious about serving in this role and recited tehillim, Jewish psalms, for the deceased. Rough around the edges, David had a sweet neshama (soul) which was reflected in his writings. David loved to write poetry and compose letters which he would send to the editor of the Shenandoah Evening Herald newspaper. The writings, which appeared in print, were often about the politics of Israel or the passing of his parents or siblings. David also loved his siblings and to their delight, would occasionally surprise them with a letter or poem.
Milton Sorin: Milton was born in Shenandoah on November 1,1923. He was the fifth of eight siblings and was the son of Rebecca and Max Sorin. Milton’s life was devoted to his family, to his friends, to his Shenandoah community and to so many others whose personal lives he touched. He was an example of optimism and faith and the epitome of selflessness. His concern for others came naturally. After his Bar Mitzvah, when he was 13 years old, he had a bicycle accident which involved many surgeries and a year long hospitalization in Philadelphia, far away from family. We are told that he never complained, was never demanding of his nurses or doctors, and worked hard at improving his mobility. Although he lived with a disfigured and immobile arm, he never let it stop him from working or helping others. He was totally devoted to the Shenandoah Community. Soft spoken, humorous and always a gentleman, he considered all those in his home town important people to support in whatever way he could. Milt was dedicated to the United Wiping Cloth Company, his life’s work, where he spent a large part of his time.
He was very concerned with the welfare of his employees. Generous and kind, Milt had an aristocratic spirit and a humble soul. Milt was affectionally called “Uncle Miltie”, “Uncle Milkshake” and “Uncle Butterscotch” by his nieces and nephew. That latter was because he always put a butterscotch candy taped inside a birthday card he was sending and he never forgot their
birthdays! Milt loved sports! He and his brother, Ruby, would watch football games, banging on the table or stomping their feet whenever their team made a touchdown hoping that their wager was successful. He was an ardent Phillies and Eagles fan. He sponsored a Little League Baseball Team calling it “Sorin’s Scrappers.” He also loved to watch silly comedies. Over the years, he and his father, Max, would watch The Three Stooges, laughing and clapping loudly at the antics of these characters on the television. A lover of Judaism, Milt was dedicated to its teachings. Not enough for a minyan for someone saying Kaddish? Call Milt – he will come, pick you up and to ensure the minyan, pick up someone else on the way! Milt made the best of every situation and appreciated the beauty of doing for others. Milton taught us that life is a gift given when one is born, but what one does with this gift is up to each and every individual person. People, through the years, have made these comments about Milt:
Have a problem? Need something? Go to Milton. He’ll help you! “Got to” see Milt if you need a driver, “Got to” see Milt if you need a mover, “Got to” see Milt if you have a problem. “Got to” see Milt if you need something. He’ll never let you down. MILTON SORIN WAS KNOWN AS MR. SHENANDOAH – DOING EVERYTHING FOR EVERYBODY!
Ruth Sorin Rosenbaum: Ruth Sorin Rosenbaum was born May 11, 1935 in Shenandoah, PA and was the youngest of eight children of Rebecca and Max Sorin. She was a graduate of J.W. Cooper High School in Shenandoah and earned a nursing degree from Temple University School of Nursing in Philly. She worked as a registered nurse in Harrisburg and later in Wilmington, DE before raising her three daughters. When her youngest were in high school, she renewed her nursing license and went to work at the Mary Campbell Center in Wilmington, a home for people with disabilities. Her kind and loving nature shined when she was helping others and she loved her work there. Ruth enjoyed reading, doing puzzles and shouting out the answers as she watched game shows. At various times she wrote poems and short stories for her own enjoyment. She loved
reading to children and volunteered with Read Aloud Delaware and at Camp Curtin School in Harrisburg. She also volunteered on the Junior Board at Wilmington Hospital. She loved to play the stock market and talk about her investments. She loved the simple things in life, like going out for ice-cream. She made friends easily and liked talking to all sorts of people. Ruth was devoted to her family. She was a homemaker and raised three daughters. Ruth loved her family and extended family and was very close to her siblings. She never wanted to miss a family occasion. Ruth was selfless with her family and others and took care of her parents in-law as well as being the emotional lifeline for her sister-in-law. She was the youngest aunt to Rhoda and they always had fun together and were very close. Ruth always talked toRhoda about how much she loved nursing, and that is probably why Rhoda became a nurse. Her son-in-law Mark remembers feeling immediately accepted as her son, not just as her
daughter’s husband. She trusted his judgment and valued his opinions. She reached out to Mark’s family as well, remembering birthdays, celebrating new births, and anniversaries. Ruth became a grandmother when she was 50 and was thrilled with her time with her granddaughters. She loved to spoil them and would always arrive for visits to Israel with a huge suitcase full of presents, and one tiny bag with clothes for herself. And, she would always buy clothes for her sons-in-law. And of course, she spoiled her daughters. Even after they were grown, she loved to buy things for them and take care of them. She loved giving to people. She had patience with what became quite a menagerie in her house. At one point, her two youngest daughters had 18 gerbils, 3 hamsters, a guinea pig, a goldfish and a dog. Yet, she never said no. She knew her daughters loved animals, and their happiness came first. When the girls were grown and moved back home she accepted their cats too. Ruth was a wonderful cook. Her daughters loved her spaghetti, vegetable and chicken soups, brisket (yum!), and her Challah stuffing and special cranberry jello mold at Thanksgiving. Yet, as always, she was humble, modest and unassuming and didn’t realize just how good it was.
She had an adventurous spirit! She loved a sailboat ride in Annapolis that she took with daughter and son-in-law. In Israel, Ruth tried an adventure sport – zip lining James Bond style. She loved it so much she did it twice! Ruth and her youngest daughter had many adventures where they would drive somewhere, get lost and somehow find their way back again — in
Washington DC, England, Canada, Arizona, Harrisburg and other places. Ruth passed away far too early, and at a young age, only 70 years old, and is deeply missed by her family.
Sherwin Joshua Sorin: Sherwin was the son of Rebecca and Max Sorin. He was born in Shenandoah, Pa. in 1930. Sheila, as he was known, was the seventh child in a family with eight children, and the youngest of four sons. Sheila became the center of attention with all his nieces and nephews, from the United States and Israel. He was fun, emotional and uninhibited. Caring and sensitive, he sometimes had difficulty expressing what he really wanted to convey and he would often get frustrated that his message wasn’t getting through to his family and friends. He wanted you to listen to him. He found unique ways of showing his interest and devotion to his family. He enjoyed giving novelty gifts, keychains, oversized barrettes, big Jewish stars, and gorillas that sang the macarena! No one will ever forget his neon colored socks, never matching, long before they became fashionable, or his colorful yarmulkes! A creative and diligent worker, Sheila was also a very effective boss. He loved manual labor and he was very good at it. He would never ask anyone who worked for him to do anything that he would not do himself. A life long learner, Sheila did not learn in a conventional way. He had a set of encyclopedias and he would sit and faithfully read them to relax. He was never shy about sharing all the interesting things he had learned, especially about science. Sheila had an eccentric and unique personality. He was devoted and loyal to his family. He loved everyone and cared deeply about their welfare. When Sherwin Joshua Sorin was around, you always knew it. He had a distinct presence. His most outstanding feature was his humanity to both people and animals alike. He gave freely to those in financial need, be it employees or friends. Loans were made “interest free.” He had a forgiving heart. No one in need ever went unfed or unclothed. People had a roof over their heads because he paid overdue rents, unpaid utility bills and provided necessities to families in need. Any stray or abandoned animal that found its way to Sheila was immediately adopted and given the best of food, housing and veterinary care. They were
loved unconditionally and lived out their lives with Sheila. Upon death they were buried with dignity and prayers. Sheila followed the dictates of Judaism and the beliefs by which he was raised. The many caring and unselfish mitzvot he performed toward his fellow men and women and the creatures in his care were his success in life. They honored his parents who raised him. He respected and loved his parents, his sisters and brothers, their spouses and children. He connected to everyone in playful ways. He was very proud of being a Jew and he always wore a large gold Jewish star around his neck.
Sylvia Sorin: Sylvia Sorin, also known as Tzippi, was born in 1916 in Shenandoah, Pennsylvania. She was the third child and first daughter of eight children born to Rebecca and Max Sorin. She was a graduate of the J. W. Cooper High School. Sylvia was exceptionally bright and a gifted pianist. Upon entering the Sorin home, one could hear the beautiful melodies permeate the rooms inside. She loved to read and shared her love of books with her siblings and their children. Sylvia was very protective of her young nieces. Her siblings would always comment about her beauty and independence. Unfortunately, Sylvia was ill for most of her adult life. She succumbed to Leukemia when she was just 40 years old.